Elizabeth Ellis

Recent Articles

The Good Wife Works – The other woman

 

 

 

Tonya (not her real name) didn’t think of herself as a jealous woman. In fact, she remembered that while waiting in a long line and talking to the man next to her, when she wrote down on a slip of paper something the man said, a woman marched up to Tonya and demanded, “Did he give you his cell phone number?”

“No. Should he have?” Tonya felt sorry for her. Item (Associated Press, October 2011): A Wisconsin woman aimed a gun at her fiancé’s head after finding him with another woman in the basement of his home. When the gun didn’t fire, she stabbed him. Continue Reading →

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The Good Wife Works – Like a good neighbor, Rondo is there

When I moved into the Rondo neighborhood, I ground-truthed, i.e., I walked the streets to learn the lay of the land. On one of these walks a woman, Ms. Ellis, was often on her front porch, and I’d say hello, and we’d whine about the weather. After a while I asked if I might come up on her porch and sit with her. “I don’t think you realize the magnitude of the impact you can have on someone’s life,” Derek Jeter once said. Ms. Ellis impacted mine. Continue Reading →

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The Good Wife Works – On Whitney Young: our Minnesota national treasure

 

 

We must deal with ourselves, but you must deal with us, too.”  — Eugene Robinson, Washington Post Pulitzer Prize winner

 

Seeing The Powerbroker: Whitney Young’s fight for civil rights, a documentary film by Bonnie Boswell, prompted me to go back to read a second book on Young, Whitney Young: Militant Mediator, by his official biographer Dennis Dickerson. Whitney Moore Young was born 7/31/21 in Kentucky and drowned in Nigeria 3/11/71. Ramsey Clark saw Young’s arm go up twice in the water that day as if in trouble and pulled him out. The two autopsies that were performed disagreed on the cause of Young’s death. As head of the National Urban League, “His organization effectively lobbied the House and Senate to pass the Civil Rights Act(s) of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.”

Young worked with President(s) John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Baines Johnson. Continue Reading →

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The Good Wife Works – On soul food

 

 

 

Filmmaker Byron P. Hurt (born 12/31/69) presented his documentary Soul Food Junkies at Macalester College in St. Paul during Black History Month 2013. The film was also shown at the Merriam Park Branch of the St. Paul Public Library during Black History Month, and on PBS. While attending Northeastern University, Hurt decided to discuss his concerns with his father about his father’s health and diet. Continue Reading →

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The Good Wife Works – America in the Age of Obama

In a recent workshop held on the campus of Macalester College in St. Paul on the state and condition of America in the age of Obama, it was agreed that our president and the symbol that the presidency represents is its highest compliment, the ultimate achievement. He is credible. He qualifies to be president. Do the rest of us? Continue Reading →

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The Good Wife Works – Gypsies, Jews, Hmong and Blacks — diasporas of the unwanted

 

When I was a little girl, people would ask, “What nationality are you?” That is to say, to what tribe do I belong? What is my country of origin? Belonging is tribe, blood and culture, not necessarily territory and certainly not based on citizenship now that so many in the world occupy diasporas and are not living in the place where their forbears were born. “Most of culture lies hidden, outside volume control, making up warp and woof of human existence,” says Edward T. Hall. It is human nature to want to belong. Continue Reading →

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HealthPartners’ new diversity leader

 
Tonya Jackman Hampton faces racism, promotes inclusiveness

 

By Elizabeth Ellis

Contributing Writer

 

 

This past September, HealthPartners appointed Tonya Jackman Hampton the organization’s new senior director of diversity, inclusion and engagement. Hampton has worked for multiple Fortune 500 companies. A Minnesota native and mother of a 17-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son, she graduated from Clark Atlanta University and has an MBA from the University of St. Thomas. Prior to her position at HealthParnters she was the human resources director for global inclusion, engagement and diversity at Medtronic. Continue Reading →

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Mistreatment does not excuse irresponsibility

My Black former husband claimed that his rage was the effect of the hostile conditions of his environment and was, therefore, qualified; bona fide. He said, “Blacks are born victims!”

In trying to comprehend his world, I read and I pondered: Will American Blacks fail in spite of or because of having been born Black? Is my former husband in charge of his fate? His Black militant stance was his badge of honor, Black righteous anger and mistrust. To read more about this story, pick up a copy of the MSR newspaper:

http://www.spokesman-recorder.com/msr-print-edition-pick-up-locations/

 

Or become an MSR subscriber:

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Continue Reading →

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Secretary of State Mark Ritchie discusses the voter ID amendment

 

 

By Elizabeth Ellis

Contributing Writer

 

On October 19, from 7:30-9 am at Turtle Bread, 4762 Chicago Ave. South, Minneapolis, Secretary of State Mark Ritchie, by invitation of City Council Member Elizabeth Glidden, discussed the challenges to Minnesotans this election season regarding the proposed constitutional voter ID amendment on the ballot. “Changing Minnesota’s constitution,” Ritchie argued, “should not be taken lightly. Our state constitution is sacred to daily life.”

In his remarks, Ritchie emphasized that amending the constitution could cause changes to local taxpayers. Voting is community based, but with many different faces, such as small rural, out-state townships with 500 voters who vote by mail verses large urban counties. Continue Reading →

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On crime, racism, and distrust of police

 

“When you shoot somebody, that’s not the only person that you’re killing.”  

— Nona Gaye, Marvin Gaye’s daughter, testifying after his death

 

I attended a neighborhood meeting on racism. Afterward I mentioned the comments I heard in that meeting regarding law enforcement to one of our law enforcement officials. “It’s hopeless,” he said when I conveyed the negative comments from the seminar, “when that’s how they feel about us.”

So I stepped out from behind his hopelessness and asked to meet with another public relations representative from the local police department to see what could be and/or what is being done about this impasse between the electorate and their peace officers. Broad publicity has been given to the cases of O. J. Simpson, Rodney King, and Henry Louis Gates (and his meeting with President Obama) when each of these celebrities of color had run-ins with the law. Another famed activist, Angela Davis, is a proponent for the rights of inmates and speaks out on prisons as factories that house an inordinate number of young Black men compared to their ratio in the American population. Continue Reading →

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